NHS whistleblowers get more protection
NHS whistleblowers will soon be able to take hospitals to court, after being granted specific legal protection by the Department of Health. Under the legislation – a provision of the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015 – NHS employees will have a right to complain to an employment tribunal, a county court or the High Court about discrimination in finding new jobs in the NHS due to their whistleblowing actions. The plans form part of the implementation of the Francis Report that flagged the poor treatment of whistleblowers in the NHS.
However some critics have argued that the changes rely too heavily on victimised staff needing to bring expensive private cases against employers, and say nothing about ensuring one of the whistleblower’s key protections: a prompt, transparent and credibly independent investigation.